The Envelope: Fast-tracking into the Future of Customized Communication

As the battle for customers rages in letterboxes and email inboxes, the information and media company Nielsen confirms the unique advertising effect of the envelope—even in the digital age. Interestingly, customers today expect both the value of a real envelope as well as the individualized approach of an email—while in order to increase the impact for advertisers and advertising agencies, quality, target-oriented direct mail must be faster. W+D is introducing the W+D 234 d, an industrial, digital four-color envelope overprinter—with high-speed 1:1 marketing.

W+D has been pursuing its passion for envelope innovations since 1913, the year in which the rotation principle for envelope machines was invented. W+D believes today more than ever in the decisive role of the envelope in the future.


The customized envelope

The Nielsen study reveals that the customized envelope represents the most effective mailing option in comparison to personalized email, self-mailers and wrappers, and compared to the standard envelope. A customized envelope generates the highest recall value. It is most frequently opened and its contents are most likely to be read. Moreover, the customized envelope surpasses its competitors with respect to its perceived value. As such, no other customized alternative for distributing information motivates its recipients more.

Younger target groups (16–34 years old) assess physical envelopes even more positively than older target groups (55–65 years old); but only when these are highly customized. Younger target groups want the best of both worlds: a real envelope and the high degree of personalization of an email.


As efficient as an email

For reasons of cost and efficiency many advertisers focus more upon delivering quantity via emails than quality via direct mail. “It is imperative to continue to increase the envelope’s impact with customization, whilst at the same time minimizing the efficiency disadvantages compared to electronic communication: the time-to-mailbox—the time from conception to delivery—is decisive,” says Jochen Engelke, CEO, W+D.

Since the integration of Buhrs-ITM, the envelope inserting solutions company, in 2010, W+D has been the sole technology and system solutions partner to serve the complete mail value chain—from production of the envelope to printing and filling and onto dispatch. W+D is showcasing the W+D 234 d—the world’s fastest industrial, digital four-color envelope overprinter.

“With the combination of 1:1 envelope customization and a reduced time-to-mailbox factor, the W+D 234 d has the potential to fundamentally change the entire industry sector. Other W+D technology innovations are yielding the same results, such as the W+D TIMOS, the world’s first Totally-Integrated Mail Output Solution.” Engelke looks forward to an exciting year ahead.